Monday, January 5, 2009

Looking forward, looking back

2008 was a big year for me. I'm in a place- both literally and figuratively- I never imagined I would be this time last year. The two biggest changes for me were a move across the country and a new job. As I said yesterday, both are exciting and unsettling at the same time.

But today I wanted to focus on a lighter topic- running and fitness.

2008 was a great year for me, running-wise. I had a major jump in fitness in early April and then again in September. I improved my marathon time by about 40min and my 1/2 marathon time by 10min. I've finally gotten it through my head that a little hard work (rather than a lot of easy work) goes a long way. And I have high hopes for next year.

In 2009, I want to:
Break 23:00 in 5k
Break 49:00 in 10k
Break 1:45 in 1/2 marathon
Qualify for Boston
Weight train an average of 2x per week
Improve swim endurance to 3000m/workout
Complete a triathlon
Get a bike and start riding outside
Run in 9 races

Another thing I'd like to do this year is work on my own fitness and life vision statements and create a motivational vision board. This is a great idea I gleaned from over at Mizfit's Place. The idea is to come up with a mission/vision statement for your life (and you can come up with different ones for different aspects of your life) that guide the overarching principles of what you do from day to day. Whenever you make a choice to do something, you check to see if it is inline with your vision. Say you are tempted to go home and plop on the couch for a rerun of What Not To Wear. If your fitness vision statement includes something about developing well-rounded fitness, you see the swim workout as more than a boring swim workout, but as a means to an end. On the other hand, if you are considering going out for a run when you have an injury, and your vision statement includes something about giving your body appropriate rest to recover, then it's easier to see that running- rather than not running- is detrimental to your goals. The vision board is sort of a collage-y motivational board that can flesh out your vision statement with other words and pictures. I'd like to come up with a vision statement for my whole life and do the vision board thing, but for right now, I'm just sticking with fitness.

So here it goes, my fitness vision statement for 2009:

To be a well-rounded athlete I must swim, run, cycle, lift weights, and get enough rest. I must view every workout as an opportunity and complete it with focus and a goal. I must eat enough healthy food during the day to fuel afternoon workouts and long runs. I must not berate myself or feel bad if things do not go according to plan. I must reassess, and continue striving toward my goals.